We’re sure you have drafted a bucket list of activities you wish to experience, such as swimming with the dolphins, skydiving, zip-lining, or other similar experiences. However, did you ever think about creating a bucket list of culinary experiences?
Traveling to different countries to experience gastronomic delights is worth adding to our bucket list. The way a chef takes simple ingredients you probably have lying around in your pantry and turns them into a gorgeous and delectable meal is nothing short of magic. Much like any other art form, there are many families where generations spend time honing the skills of their ancestors to produce food that is unlike anything.
If you’re a food lover, let us take you through the ultimate bucket list of culinary experiences worldwide that will change your life.
1. Undersea, Maldives
Let’s start our journey at the gorgeous Hurawalhi Island in the Maldives, where you can dine under the sea. The largest restaurant of its kind in the world, Undersea, is a glass-enclosed establishment located 5.8 meters under sea level. This reservation-only experience offers guests a delectable 7-course dinner comprising the freshest and most meticulously prepared seafood and wagyu beef.
The meal incorporates extravagant ingredients such as truffle, caviar, and saffron, further elevating the experience. The best part, however, is witnessing the region’s aquatic wildlife in their natural habitat right before your eyes.
2. Elkmont Station, Knoxville
In the US, you’ll be amazed to find an exquisite restaurant in Eastern Tennessee in the lovely city of Knoxville. Located at Campbell Station Road, Elkmont Station is the best among all restaurants near Knoxville TN, and beyond.
We know you expected us to land somewhere in Los Angeles or New York, but this place may be America’s best-kept secret. An ode to Knoxville’s history with the Great Smoky Mountain National Park, Elkmont offers an evolving menu of food and drinks prepared with great love and care.
As it is the season of seafood, Elkmont currently offers delicious seared scallops and a glorious broiled salmon risotto. If going to America’s most visited national park wasn’t enough motivation for you to head to Tennessee, let the wonderful culinary experience awaiting you at Elkmont be the reason.
3. Nusr-et, Istanbul
Let’s move East to the city of 2 continents – Istanbul. Considering the rich history, vibrant culture, breathtaking architecture, and the magnificent Bosphorus Strait, your bucket list should contain a trip to Istanbul. However, there’s one more reason for you to make that trip: the internet-famous ‘Salt Bae’ aka. Nusret has his original restaurant in the Grand Bazaar of Istanbul.
From American-style steaks to Middle Eastern cuts, Nusret is the true meat maestro. While you can enjoy his food in several other cities around the globe, including here in the USA, the experience in Istanbul is unparalleled.
4. Alfredo alla Scrofa, Rome
Our next stop will address the age-old Italian-American debate over the mutually beloved Fettucine Alfredo. That’s right; we’re off to the birthplace of the pasta dish in Rome.
Found in 1914 by Alfredo di Lelio, the authentic Fettucine Alfredo is the most delicious comfort food. Fresh pasta smothered in a freshly whipped cream of butter and Parmesan cheese, the Fettucine at Alfredo alla Scrofa has been enjoyed by people worldwide for over a century. Once you try this delicacy, trust me, the American bechamel-based Alfredo will not cut it for you anymore.
5. Ultraviolet, Shanghai
Let’s move further down East to the beautiful and vibrant city of Shanghai in Mainland China. Ultraviolet is a tech-culinary infusion by the extremely talented Paul Pairet, an exclusive one-of-a-kind experience. The restaurant focuses little on aesthetics (or maybe a little too much, you decide) with a simple 10-seater table set in the center of a room with bare, white walls.
The idea behind Ultraviolet is to allow the food and the concealed technology to play with your senses. True to Pairet’s style, the restaurant offers avant-garde figurative-style foods that trick your senses and tantalize the taste buds. If you value a unique experience, this should be at the top of your list.
6. Pujol, Mexico City
Mexican cuisine is loved around the globe, especially in America. Just look at the number of Taco Bell and Chipotle in the country. In the capital of the beautiful country of Mexico is the sensational Pujol. The flagship restaurant of the world-famous Enrique Olvera, Pujol, has won more awards than we could count.
The restaurant has an evolving menu inspired by the Japanese concept of omakase. At Pujol, guests hand the reins over to Olvera and his team. With dishes like Octopus Tacos and Pumpkin Tamales, dinner at Pujol will certainly be a unique experience.
7. Wolfgat, Cape Town
As we head further down to the very edge of South America, you’ll find yourself at the ‘Best Restaurant in the World’ as per World Restaurant Awards. Nestled in a 130-year-old barn in the quaint village of Paternoster, Wolfgat offers a 7-course, seasonal tasting menu comprising only the region’s best indigenous ingredients.
Each sitting hosts 20 persons only, making it an exclusive experience. What further adds to the experience is that right next to the restaurant is the Wolfgat cave, a 2000-year-old cave that holds great significance for the region. As you feast upon fresh seafood and venison, you can peek into an integral part of human history.
8. The Rock Restaurant, Zanzibar
The last stop on our list is down in Tanzania at the Rock Restaurant in Zanzibar. African cuisine is a diverse and tempting culinary delight that has gained immense popularity in the past decade. A small hut sitting atop a boulder, the Rock’s menu contains the freshest seafood prepared using traditional African spices and recipes. However, for those reluctant to experiment, the Rock also offers plenty of continental options.
As you sit and feast on the delicious food, you can also experience an unrestricted view of the gorgeous blue waters of the Indian Ocean, making the Rock a bucket list essential.
The world has plenty of culinary delights to offer, each with its distinguishable delicious flavors and spices. However, the above eight restaurants are once-in-a-lifetime experiences that delight the senses. Now you have the ultimate culinary experiences bucket list in hand. So, explore the world and all the mouth-watering food it offers.